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tv   The Chris Matthews Show  NBC  April 11, 2010 10:00am-10:30am EDT

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>> this is "the chris matthews show" -- >> ask not what your courynt can do for you. >> tear down this wall. >> i can hearup. >> the time for change has come! chris: with a supreme court nomination battle looming, the partisan battle in washington could become explosive. winds of change -- fresh from his big home victory on health, enesidt obama ram rods a major scene shift on the world stage, going pro-active on mideast peace. and going south -- whats it for this praise for the con federacy in virginia?
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do republicans have a new southern strategy? hi, i'm chris matthews. catty kay, dan rather, heelen cooper and davidition -- ignatius with me. first up, president obama has a supreme court pick to make and washington's got a hot new debate to be -- topic. just -- justice john paul stevens has been the linchpin on the supreme court and finding the right person to replace him -- dan, a place to make history. will he go for it? >> he'll go for it. knowing the republicans will fight it to the last. we have to understand stevens hasn't been just one of nine. this is a historic figure. much seniority he has. seniority is huge in this issue.
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and the third thing to keep in mind is the modern history of the court has been each time the court has an appointee, the appointee is the -- to the right of the person sher succeeding and whomever he appoints will be to the right of stevens. chris: wow. heelen, is there much talk at the white house, which you cover, about finding a leader, not just a member of the court this time? >> that's certainly something much on the minds of the obama administration and people who are going to be shepherding this. but this is an election year so what president obama has to do is decide whether he wants a big fight or a little fight. we have the three front runners last year when he picked sote amayor, you have judge wood and garland. everybody considers judge wood to be sort of to the left. she would be a big fight. kagan would be sort of a
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littler fight. it's going to be interesting to see where president obama ends up. in the middle of an election year does he really want, do you have the mid term elections coming up, does he really want to that -- have that go to the mat type of supreme court battle? >> and in the midst of the fascination of whether the economic recovery is real is it really his intention to focus all the attention on civil rights issues and social issues? >> no. one thing they would like to avoid is a lot of focus on an issue like abortion. they do feel they have a fairly well-oiled machine, that it went through last time fairly smoothly and they feel confident they can get this through without a very big fight. if you look at the front-runners, although you have wood, when -- who is a
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little bit to the left, none are hugely left. not talking about a real radical amonse tho front runners. and they represent where the president is, probably more center than left. chris: getting back to the leadership question, justice john paul stevens is say leader the are he -- they going to go for a leader? >> i would guess they would look to try to reshape, re-form what they hope will eventually be a liberal majority on the court again. it was striking reading justice stevens in a profile in the new yorker a couple weeks ago talking about how much the court has changed, how little scope there is for somebody like him and i felt he felt on his back heels like -- with this very strong new conservative majority. i think they will think who is the person who can begin to
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look to lead the liberals back? >> and looking for someone who is a big persuader. justice stevens on some cases was able to bring over justice kennedy and make a big difference. part had to do with seniority, but he was a very good persuader and if president obama is as smart as we all think he is he will keep in mind making this choice i need somebody who can partially fill the stevens roll doctor role of picking somebody off on the conservative side for a few cases. chris: the health care mandate you've got same-sex marriage. the liberty clause. that could really get to the issue you are raising, can kennedy join the liberal majority on a case like that. are they thinking about all these hotnsutto b? >> absolutely they are. it goes beyond that too.
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when you look at scalia, who stands there as very much who unites the, he's the voice of the conservatives, you don't have that on the liberal side of the supreme court. john paul stevens was that and you look at who president obama might appoint and we may end up needing a line on who could be the liberal anthony scalia. >> can you report whether the president is inclined to make history or play it safe? >> i don't know. i really don't. too early at this point to tell. >> amongst the names you are hearing none stand out as a big liberal voice or a big leader in that sense. >> the idea that there's a safe course here, i just think in the polarized washington he's going to get beat up -- chris: you think he's going to go outside the usual bench list? somebody like janet napolitano,
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granholm, the governors >> i think it's absolutely possible. this is a president who picked hillary clinton to be his secretary of state. so often the people we expect will end up nominated, don't. chris: a couple factors have come up that are almost odd. will -- with the departure of justice john paul stevens there will be no property evidentants on the court. >> that will be in the think've of the president. >> but less than this sote 0 mayor. -- sotomayor. last time it was very important to have another woman. it was ground-breaking to reach out and put a hispanic on the court. it's interesting that among the people being mentionedt athe moment several are women and i think the white house would like a 6-3 balance but it's not as important. >> i think the fact that with
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stevens leaving no protestant on the court it will be a factor, a major factor? no. it seems part of the country aches for someone who hasn't gone the usual ivy league route, clerkship, judgeship, never tried a case. i don't think yi goods -- going to pick such a person but the bold pick would be -- chris: is a heat question. will this be a huge fight all summer basically right through most of the summer? >> no, i don't think it will. >> i think it will. the republicans will fight to the last trench. chris: no matter who they pick? >> absolutel >> it will be a fight among others. chris: the hot fight? >> if it's somebody who really drives conservatives crazy, yeah. chris: before the break barack obama high-tailed it out of
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prague early monday morning after a perfunctory meeting with world leaters. he is no teddy roosevelt riding high into europe looking like the fronteersman coming to charm the old try -- country and no franklin roosevelt whose intimate relationship with churchill helped win a war and certainly no george w. with that clals clown back rub he gave angela merkel or that towel snapping with tony blair. ? there's been a lot said about how different you are as people have you already in your talk found something that you, maybe some personal interest you have in common? >> well, we both use colgate toothpaste. >> they're going to wonder how you know that, george. chris: and he's no bush when it comes to dealing with the
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russians. here was bush in his famous first take on putin. >> i found him to be very straightforward and trustwort and we had a very good dialogue. i was able to get a sense of his soul. chris: but this president's no bush. that's hardly the obama relationship with the current president and when we come back wel talk about president obama's foreign policy. he wanted to transform it. how's he doing?
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chris: welcome back. president obama hopes to be a transformational president on the world stage. this week he signed that nuclear arms treaty and this coming week hosts that summit on loose nuclear weapons.
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his biggest emphasis in the campaign was ending that cowboy mentality, that renaming of french fries, that my way or the highway stuff. >> we must neither retreat from the world nor try to bully it into submission. we must lead by deed and example. we must lead by marshalling the global effort to stop the spreaved the world's most -- spread of the world's most dangerous weapons. chris: dan, that was a very compelling promise. how's he doing? >> hard to tell. i'd like to answer the questions directly but first of all it's still fairly early in his presidency. certainly a direct difference from george bush and in the early stages just after he took office there were a lot of high
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hopes. so far those hopes have not been met. it's very difficult -- is he trying to do too much too soon? david ignatius talked about that, the whole new thing in the middle east. listen, we have two wars. we have iraq and afghanistan agent. mexico threatening to become iran on our own border. he's trying to do an awful lot. a for effort. question mark on how it is going to turn out. chris: let's let the goal here for film. -- him. he set the goal. the big speech in cairo where he really promised the third world, the islamic world, the billion people out there we're going to be different. >> he said it in his cairo rhetoric, the town hall meetings he's had and the response has been very positive. it frankly couldn't have been negative after george bush because there had been so much
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anti-american sentiment after george bush and then you get obama coming on and they do love him but it's a confused message too. when he went to accept the peace prize he gave a thumping dves american militarism. chris: these weapons -- wow, the russians still have 12,000, we have 9,000 nuclear weapons? >> the reductions are modest. 30% cut. but this is an area where you can see real strategic vision on the part of obama. obama thinks as do most strategists that nuclear weapons have very little value now inro ptecting us the we would be better off really in a world of zero nuclear weapons so he's begun to start to shift the debate. he's announced a new nuclear posture in which he's saying we will not attack you with nuclear weapons if you sign on
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to the nonproliferation treaty. kind of making a deal with the world the next week is going to be a summit all about loose nukes, which people say are the real threat. so he has a strategic vision and he's gi -- going to try to go after the details one by one. will he be successful? i don't know but i like the articulation've a clear new sense of where the world is. chris: are we in or out? >> we are so in. chris: in afghanistan? >> yeah. yeah. you saw hamid karzai a week ago come out and say if the national community doesn't stop pressuring me, i'm going to join the taliban. that was an extraordinary statement. did you hear from the administration, ok, my god how could you say that, we're cutting ties with you? no. we can't. the reality is we need karzai
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in afghanistan. we're not there because we're trying to make afghanistan a better place other -- to live. we're there because of 9/11. >> obama was warned coming in, early in his administration, richard holbrooke said, no matter what you think of him, he clearly had a warning about karzai. the president on whoever's advice said stick with with karzai. he is now paying a very heavy price for that, as are we aument chris: are we going to have a middle east deal? we asked the matthews meter 12 regs will he win a comprehensive peace deal as president. nine say no. i'm a little more optimistic the if he gets two terms this president can't cut a deal in the middle east? pretty strong. >> i think the scation -- stacy on the ground -- situation on the ground has become more
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pessimistic than any time in the last 20 years. i don't see the two sides coming together. >> i think he can especially request -- if you grant him two terms. the discussion in the white house right now is very serious about doing something different. they look at the incremental step by step policy they've had since they came in. it isn't going anywhere and they're trying to think big. could we come up with an american peace plan? jaw -- could we draw in syria? the saudis? chris: does he have the gets -- guts to stick his neck out and be hated by some of the hawks on the israeli side and go down the other side and find peace? >> you put your finger on it. after being beat up over health care, a tough fight with people who really want to take him
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down, he's a little bit different. >> has he been chastened? >> no. i think he's emboldened. i think there are a lot of steps that have to be followed before he does it, preliminary talks you have to go through and they have to crash and burn and all that and at that point i think you will see obama coming in. he's goings -- going to get slammed. he will get so slammed by the israel lobby and by the republicans. if you think health care was a ploody fight, this will be even harder. >> but there is some concern even by people who say look, i have my problems with israel. israel is night -- fighting a three-front war with gaza, syria, and iran and any peace proposal the president makes in the middle east has got to have that as part of the core. that this isn't imagined by the israelis, this is reament chris: but the reality is maybe
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they have to cut a peace with their neighbors in a way they haven't wanted to in the past? when we come back, these reporters tell me something i don't know. here's to the believers. the risk-takers. the visionaries. the entrepreneurs... who put it all on the line to build and run their own businesses. at at&t, we know something about that. our company started out in a small lab, with not much more than a dream. and today, we know it's small
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businesses that can create the jobs america needs. that's why at&t is investing billions to upgrade and build out our wired and wireless networks. making them faster, smarter, and more secure. connecting small businesses to markets across the country, and around the world. we invest now, because we know it will pay off... with new jobs, new growth, from a new generation, putting their belief in the future on the line. now is the time for investment and innovation. the future is waiting. and the future has always the future is waiting. and the future has always been our business. at&t.
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chris: welcome back. katty, tell me something i don't know. >> we now have a date for the british general election, may 6. here's an interesting factoid about it. the financing differences between britain and america on elections are stunning. last cost. obama himself is set to raise over $1 billion for the next american presidential. chris: dan rather? >> vastly underrated story, the explosive growth of child prostitution in this country particularly along a track from seattle to portland, san francisco and las vegas but not confined to that. this is a problem that every
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cop you know knows it, is absolutely exploding the chris: helene cooper? >> we've been hearing a lot about iran sanctions and we're uaredgep to do that but nothing is going to happen until summer time because lebanon holds the security council presidency until next month and they're not about to let that go through. chris: bob? >> he wants out when the year is done and the name i hear most often to replace him, senator ryder of rhode island. ris:ch when we come back, is the g.o.p. returning to a southern strategy? here's to the believers.
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the risk-takers. the visionaries. the entrepreneurs... who put it all on the line to build and run their own businesses. at at&t, we know something about that. our company started out in a small lab, with not much more than a dream. and today, we know it's small businesses that can create the jobs america needs. that's why at&t is investing billions to upgrade and build out our wired and wireless networks. making them faster, smarter, and more secure. connecting small businesses to markets across the country, and around the world. we invest now, because we know it will pay off... with new jobs, new growth, from a new generation, putting their belief in the future on the line. now is the time for
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investment and innovation. the future is waiting. and the future has always the future is waiting. and the future has always been our business. at&t. [captioning made possible by nbc universal] chris: welcome back. virginia's republican governor issued a proclamation this week celebrating the confed eracy but leave out any mention of slaferey. is the republican party moving toward a southern strategy, katty? >> i think the republican party just doesn't know where it's going. you have this splivet the sang -- anger around the country, the palin-balkmann duet this week, all they -- very
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emotional. i am fon't deel like there is a clear strategy. chris: i'm looking at things like secession in texas. the a.g. in florida, pushing this issue of states' rights? >> the answer is yes. they're not just moving toward a southern strategy. they have a southern strategy. they're not just whistling dixie, this is the core of defeating obama in the next election. >> i'm with dan 100% on this. i live in virginia and i remember waking up in the morning and wanong t go back under the covers when i heard he was making it confederate history month. >> cock-eyed thear -- theory is after wars america often has a period of isolationism. maybe what's going on is you want to disentangle from foreign problems and from washington which a lot of americans increasingly see as a foreign place. a pull back toward the states
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and traditional valuesm chris: thanks, that's the show. thanks for watching. see you here next week. here's to the believers.
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the risk-takers. the visionaries. the entrepreneurs... who put it all on the line to build and run their own businesses. at at&t, we know something about that. our company started out in a small lab, with not much more than a dream. and today, we know it's small businesses that can create the jobs america needs. that's why at&t is investing billions to upgrade and build out our wired and wireless networks. making them faster, smarter, and more secure. connecting small businesses to markets across the country, and around the world. we invest now, because we know it will pay off... with new jobs, new growth, from a new generation, putting their belief in the future on the line. now is the time for

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